Keep Indianapolis Beautiful sees a vibrant city, with every neighborhood landscape thriving and well, and its people empowered, mobilized, and devoted to that vision. Much of our work improves areas of Indianapolis that are in economic distress, giving residents the opportunity to collectively invest in their neighborhoods and the city's future.
KIB works with neighborhoods to transform them with trees, gardens, and small parks. It serves as a catalyst for the community to reclaim vacant lots and underused places as natural, beautiful, and functional greenspaces. Through our summer youth employment program, the Youth Tree Team, KIB employs 100 youth to develop work skills, civic leadership, and environmental stewardship. KIB programs aim to create cleaner neighborhoods that ultimately discourage crime, graffiti, and blight. Outdoor conditions that encourage health, well-being, and safety is something Keep Indianapolis Beautiful strives to accomplish for all Indianapolis residents.
Together, neighbors and KIB improve neighborhoods and public land, developing environmental skills and social networks that foster a lifelong appreciation of nature. What's more, Keep Indianapolis Beautiful aims to inform citizens so they can have a lasting impact beyond what they do with KIB.
Each year, Keep Indianapolis Beautiful supports nearly 900 community improvement projects with the help of 20,000 volunteers. Strategies include:
• Engaging volunteers to keep public spaces free of litter and illegal dumping
• Working with neighborhoods and schools to develop impactful and engaging greenspaces
• Planting trees, tracking their environmental benefits, and restoring habitat along Indianapolis's main waterways
• Providing a strong support system for project partners and volunteers so their projects endure and prosper
• Influencing behavioral change by increasing the number of people reporting and participating in self-organized, independent activities that help the environment and neighborhoods thrive
• Informing and educating people about urban environmental challenges
Community is at our core. From connections with individual residents to citywide initiatives, Keep Indianapolis Beautiful brings together thousands to create vibrant places. Each year, KIB partners with neighborhoods, local government, universities, community groups, and businesses to achieve its vision of an engaged, vibrant, and beautiful Indianapolis.
KIB accomplishes its mission with help from a dedicated board of directors, tens of thousands of volunteers, and a skilled staff that includes four International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) certified arborists. We have decades of experience developing and growing our programs, including
• 40+ years of organizing cleanups and spreading anti-litter messages
• 20+ years of creating pocket parks and greenspaces
• 10+ years of planting Indiana native trees and employing youth to help maintain them
• 10+ years of organizing volunteer efforts that engage thousands of people in a single day
Keep Indianapolis Beautiful has a diverse stream of revenue from generous foundations, corporations, and individuals. KIB also has a contract with the City of Indianapolis's Department of Public Works to create and maintain green infrastructure.
Keep Indianapolis Beautiful measures progress and impact in the following ways:
• Monthly assessments conducted by KIB staff and volunteers track the impact of our litter abatement and beautification projects. Surveys and scorecards review the quality and maintenance of our IPL Project greenspaces.
• KIB's Tree Canopy Planner and the USDA's i-Tree database help track trees we planted, their health, environmental benefits, and current tree canopy for new planting strategy.
• To measure biodiversity, KIB works with Butler University to survey our flora, and citizen scientists provide insight on insect species through our citywide pollinator count.
• We measure community engagement through participation levels in our programs, surveys, interviews, and storytelling.
Keep Indianapolis Beautiful has had the following impact since its humble beginnings:
• More than 100 greenspaces and pocket parks have been created throughout Indianapolis.
• 1,040 blocks have been adopted by residents devoted to working together to keep their neighborhoods clean.
• About 2 million pounds of litter and illegal dumping are collected each year in the Great Indy Cleanup.
• Over 108 acres of invasive species have been removed along Indianapolis's major waterways.
• More than 50,000 trees native to Indiana have been planted throughout Indianapolis.
• Six miles and five interchanges along Interstate 70 have been beautified to create vibrant landscapes and artwork between the Indianapolis International Airport and downtown Indy.
• Keep Indianapolis Beautiful holds two Guinness World Records for the longest paint-by-number mural (a 1,230-foot wall; 2008) and the largest display of chalk pavement art (811 5'x5' squares promoting civic pride and anti-litter messaging; 2017)
In future years, Keep Indianapolis Beautiful will increase its annual tree planting capacity, improve tree survivability rates, reduce litter and illegal dumping, continue habitat restoration, and further develop youth employment and environmental education programs.